24 January 2013
Work is underway to review the heritage value of more than 4,500 historic buildings and places in Jersey. This follows a survey of their historic importance. The review is part of a wider programme to improve the way heritage assets in Jersey are designated and protected.
A number of new buildings have already been listed, including the AA call box in Trinity, and the heritage status of others, like the former Market Tea Rooms in Market Street, has been removed.
Over the last two years a team of specialist historic building surveyors, led by Dr Aylin Orbasli and working with Jersey Heritage, has assessed the heritage value of all Jersey’s existing historic buildings and places, and some new sites which may have heritage value. The Environment Department is now reviewing all historic sites and places, and listing or delisting accordingly.
The designation process will continue until at least the end of 2013, when all of the 4,500 sites will have been reviewed.
Governed by law
The Planning and Environment Minister, Deputy Rob Duhamel, says the process is governed by Jersey law and gives owners an opportunity to have their say in the re-designation process. “It is important that people understand why their buildings are being proposed for designation and protection. This process of engagement will hopefully encourage a greater appreciation of what is special about a property and promote a sympathetic response to the care of buildings and features that are part of the Island’s architectural and cultural identity.
"Historic buildings and places form the backdrop to our lives and it is important that we take care to identify and protect them accordingly, where they have a special value.”
The Minister added "This review is intended to ensure that only those buildings and places worthy of designation are protected. It is evident, even from the work that we have done so far, that some buildings will be removed from the list, either because their heritage value does not warrant designation or the building has changed and/or features have been lost and their heritage value has been unduly compromised."
Changes to the list
As part of a pilot scheme for the listing process, some buildings have already been reviewed. Two properties have been removed from the list because of the loss or erosion of their historic character, including Eskdale, a mid 19th century house in St Peter, and the former Market Tea Rooms, a shop from around 1820, in Market Street, St Helier.
The AA call box in Trinity has been added to the list at the highest level of grade 1 as it is one of no more than thirty surviving boxes in the UK.
The Department of the Environment will contact all owners of historic buildings and places during the next 12 months or so with information about the proposed changes to the heritage status of their properties. Where ownership details are not known, site notices will be posted.